The Purple were well represented in the final Football action before the Great Big Bowl but had a non-descript afternoon in Orlando. The top play was a Harrison Smith interception that lead to a touchdown by Fletcher Cox. Cousins wasn't great but he did have a dandy of a throw to Michael Thomas that will hopefully happen repeatedly next season! The low-light was Rhodes, not surprisingly.
NDSU started with back-to-back games in Brookings by the Basketball teams. After a slow start on Wednesday, the men rallied but ultimately came up short in what was nearly another classic between the border rivals. The women followed on Friday but also finished with a narrow loss. Back at home, the Wrestling team hosted Oklahoma and managed to get more wins than losses en route to a 24 - 15 win. The following day, both track teams were in Lincoln and finished with their usual amount of success for both the men & the women. The men's Basketball team returned to the SHAC against Denver and went wire-to-wire for the win behind a 29 point game by Vinnie Shahid, with Rocky Kreuser adding 18 and Cameron Hunter having a 14 & 10 night. The women's Basketball team made it two wins in a row at home against Denver with an overtime game that defied analytics. They overcame a 32 turnover afternoon to win 85 - 80. Emily Dietz & Rylee Nudell both had double-doubles (21/13 & 18/12) while Ryan Cobbins continued her impressive freshman season with 14 points and Nicole Scales chipped in with 11 off the bench. They're well below South Dakota but the upward trajectory that Jory Collins and his staff have the team on has been every bit as intriguing as what the guy's have done to this point in the year.
Moorhead State started with a 5656 showdown against Concordia. It came down to the last match but the fire-breathers got the better of the cornies, 20 - 19. The Track team got some events in, first at South Dakota State on Friday then at Bemidji State on Saturday. Also on Friday, the Basketball teams hosted Duluth. The women edged the dogs, 56 - 51 behind a 20 point game by Megan Hintz while Madi Green added 10 in reserve. The men kept it close but ultimately fell short, 77 - 70. On Saturday the scripts flipped as the women lost 73 - 65 to St. Cloud State while the men beat the Huskies 80 - 78 on a literally last-second layup by Kaedrick Williams. Williams' 18 was second only to Gavin Baumgartner's 25 while Joe Sevlie was 1 point higher than all of the other scorers (9 each), he finished with 10. Wrestling wrapped the week against Upper Iowa but was pinned 38 - 6.
Concordia started with a Monday night trip to St. Olaf that finished with them on the wrong end of an 89 - 68 final. they came back on Wednesday against St. John's, but it only got worse as they lost 73 - 38. The women also had a home game, which they managed to squeak out 53 - 52 on a last-second layup by Autumn Thompson & thanks to balanced offense, led by a 12 point game from Emily Beseman. Then there was the crosstown mat show on Thursday, as mentioned above. On Friday the Hockey teams faced Hamline, with divergent results. The women lost 8 - 0 while the men won 5 - 3, with four different scorers. Saturday didn't bode much differently as the scores went 5 - 1 in favor of the men while the women lost 6 - 1. In the rematch, Jacen Bracko had a hat-trick in the first two periods. The men's Basketball team looked to avoid an 0 - week against Augsburg but came up short, 96 - 64. In their pursuit of a 2 - 0 week, the women also faced Auggie but lost 82 - 62. And, for good measure, the aqua team lost at Morris 124 - 69.
In their one time out on the ice this week, Fargo lost at Tri-City 3 - 2 in regulation.
On Friday night, Sheyenne hosted Red River in a game with significant EDC implications then on Saturday Elk River was at Moorhead. Both games went the way of the home team thanks to impressive defense and nearly as good of offense.
A little late on some of this but still well ahead of the season starting, or even their workouts but the birds made some moves recently that warranted mentioning. Many of the moves, in fact, came earlier this month but with the familiarity that the recent moves had, now's as good a time as any to get caught up!